7 Days

img_4751-1This very moment is the perfect teacher.

-Pema Chödrön

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.

They go low, we go high. 

-Michelle Obama 

Over the past seven days (has it really only been one week?!) I have been reminded that you just never know who your teachers will be, how they will appear in your life, or the lessons they will bring. I never thought The Donald would be one of mine and yet, here we are and here he is.  I have spent the week examining my own fears, complacency, bubbles, reactions, thoughts and was horrified to realize that I was exhibiting some of the same traits I was denouncing in others.

Others. Them.  Those People.  Over there.  Unknown.  Scary.  Strange.  Different.

Right after the election, I found myself guessing for whom people I encountered throughout the day had voted and, based on a number of arbitrary judgments I made up in my mind,  I decided which “side” they were on. I reacted to fear with fear, viewed the country as red and blue, retreated further into my bubble, and failed to remember the very things I espouse here repeatedly.

It is the belief that we are separate from that “other”, whether that be people or the planet, that has led us to this point and it is only through its untangling that we have any chance at change, progress, and, more dramatically, survival. How can I listen without judging? How can I act rather than react? How can I stay true to my convictions without remaining rigid? How can I come from a place of love when my first reaction is fear, which manifests as hate?  How can I help and be of service?  How can I accept where we are and creatively and proactively move forward?

I don’t know the answers to any of these questions.  But, what I do know is that I have been given an opportunity to walk my talk, get involved, listen, speak up, investigate, and to repeatedly choose love, which always, always, always trumps hate in the end.

 

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